The online reputation of a brand can make or break a business or career. It has even been argued that the only business reputation that matters in the modern world is online brand reputation.
The internet is the first place that people turn to check out a company or executive. And when even one customer complaint is made online, it is no longer a matter between only the company and the customer — it’s now out there in the public domain for all to see.
Leaving your online reputation to chance is simply not an option. It’s a valuable asset and one that must be protected. Here are some tips to help you do just that:
1. Monitor What is Being Said About Your Brand
This might seem obvious, but that doesn’t make it any less important. And while tracking everything that is being said online may seem like an impossible task, there are tools, like Naymz and BrandsEye, that will look for mentions of a brand across multiple platforms, including social media.
2. Get Active on Social Media
To be able to influence a conversation, you need to be a part of it, and one of the best platforms to engage with customers is social media. It is crucial, though, not to view social media as purely a marketing tool. Social media advertising can be beneficial, but it must also be used as a means of getting brand message and personality across.
3. Encourage and Respond to Comments and Reviews
Comments and reviews left by customers demonstrate that a brand is active and that people are using its products or services. It is not, of course, good practice to ask or offer incentives for positive comments or reviews, but you can ask for unbiased ones. Remember to engage, as well — even if there are too many reviews and comments to respond to everyone, try to at least answer any questions being asked. And, do not let negative comments go unanswered — respond to them politely and demonstrate that something will be done to remedy the situation.
4. Have a Plan in Place to Counter Negative Press
If there is any negative news circulating online about a company or brand, responding in a measured and well thought out way is imperative. Have a plan in place for everything from dealing with bad reviews to countering fake stories about your brand. Part of this plan should include online reputation management experts, like Massive, who can help remove libelous, defamatory, or false content.
5. Be Ethical
The best way to maintain and protect an online reputation is simple — don’t engage in unethical practices or behaviors. Obvious slander can be removed, but legitimate negative press around a very real situation is not something a reputation management company can erase.
Protecting one’s online reputation is essential for any type of business or executive. If you need help with yours, reach out to us — we can help.